Baked Chickpeas with Paneer

chickpeas-paneer Photo: Quentin Bacon


  • 1 tablespoon neutral oil (such as grapeseed), divided, plus more for the baking dish
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (1-inch) slice ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh hot chile
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala or curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • Large dash of sugar
  • 2 cups chopped ripe tomato (1 pound whole), peeled and seeded, or diced canned tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup light coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 pound baby spinach leaves, chopped
  • 3 cups drained canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup fresh cheese, cubed (such as mozzarella)


1. Heat half of oil in a deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, ginger, and chile. Cook until onion is soft (about 5 minutes), stirring occasionally. Stir in garam masala, chili powder, and sugar; cook until fragrant (1 or 2 minutes), stirring constantly.

2. Add tomatoes; cook (about 3 minutes), stirring frequently. Add coconut milk and cilantro; cook until mixture comes to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to simmer; cook until tomatoes break up and mixture thickens (about 20 minutes), stirring occasionally.

3. Preheat oven to 400°. Coat a 9- by 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Place remaining oil in a small pan over medium-high heat. Add half of spinach to tomato sauce; cook until wilted (about 3 minutes), stirring frequently. Add remaining spinach; cook until wilted (2-3 minutes), stirring frequently.

4. Spread tomato sauce into dish; spoon chickpeas on top. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place cheese evenly over dish. Bake until sauce is bubbly and cheese and beans have browned (20-30 minutes). Remove from oven; serve.

    Prep: 15 minutes; Cook: 1 hour and 15 minutes; Total time: 1 hour and 30 minutes.
  • Yield: Makes 6 servings (serving size: 1 cup)

Nutritional Information

Calories per serving: 277
Fat per serving: 9g
Saturated fat per serving: 3g
Monounsaturated fat per serving: 2g
Polyunsaturated fat per serving: 3g
Protein per serving: 15g
Carbohydrate per serving: 37g
Fiber per serving: 11g
Cholesterol per serving: 10mg
Iron per serving: 5mg
Sodium per serving: 331mg
Calcium per serving: 245mg

Good to Know

Though this dish is meat-free, the chickpeas provide a healthy dose of protein and fiber.